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These Foods Will Keep Your Vision as Sharp as a Hawk's

 Our eyesight tends to weaken as we age, with symptoms usually varying from blurry vision to frequent headaches and watery eyes. Though it may not always be the case, factors like genetics, aging, excessive strain on the eyes and even poor nutrition are usually the contributing factors. And while weak eyesight may be corrected with prescription glasses, lenses or even surgery, consuming foods rich in the nutrients lutein and zeaxanthin (both of which can reduce the risk of chronic eye diseases) as well as a diet rich in vitamins C and E, beta-Carotene and Omega-3 fatty acids, may also help prevent age-related eye diseases.
FACT! According to the American Optometric Association, more than 25 million people worldwide are affected by age-related macular degeneration and cataracts - the leading cause of blindness in people over age 55.
Here are 10 of your best sources:
1. Start your day off with an Egg
For a beneficial breakfast, protein-packed eggs are a great way to get you started each morning. While boosting your energy, eggs also provide nutrients such as lutein, vitamin E and Omega 3 - all essential for improved eyesight. Opt for a high quality, free-range brand to stock up on more nutrients.
2. Squeeze an Orange each morning
Oranges making it to this list, should come as no surprise - they are, after all, renowned to be a great source of vitamin C, which has been found to improve eye tissue health. In the eye, vitamin C may also help to regenerate other important antioxidants, such as vitamin E.
3. Have a daily helping of Dried Fruits
The health benefits of dried fruits are plenty - they are high in fiber and vitamins and help speed up the digestive process, enabling the body to get rid of toxins. Almonds are especially good for improving vision due to their rich Omega-3 fatty acid, vitamin E and antioxidant content. For an added bonus, almonds also help enhance memory and concentration. To help strengthen your eyesight, soak six to 10 almonds along with a helping of 15 raisins and two figs overnight in a bowl of water. Eat this daily for a couple of months.
4. Add a couple of Berries into the mix
Besides bursting with tangy flavors, berries' health benefits are bountiful. They are packed with antioxidants and contain a component called rhodopsin which helps accelerate cellular regeneration - vital for maintaining healthy eyes. Alongside your dried fruits, include a helping of organic berries, like blackberries, cranberries and blueberries to help fortify the blood vessels and improve blood circulation, throughout your body, including your eyes. The berries will also help keep swelling and irritation of eyes at bay, enhancing your vision.
5. Drink up and have a Spinach and Parsley Smoothie
Both spinach and parsley offer a wealth of health benefits - even more so, when combined. Spinach is not only rich in vitamins A, B, C, E and minerals like iron and zinc - it also contains lutein and zeaxanthin, two vital compounds that help keep eyes healthy. Consuming spinach on a daily basis will also help prevent disorders like macular degeneration (a visual impairment usually found in older adults) and cataract (a clouding of the lens that affects vision). It also helps keep the corneas healthy.

Parsley, particularly when juiced, is also an effective natural remedy for eye care and is often used as an herbal remedy to relieve the eyes of problems such as corneal ulcers, cataracts, weak eyes, conjuctivitis, and sluggishness of the pupils. To make the smoothie, just combine a handful of both ingredients and blend. You can add an apple or a banana to the mix for some added flavor.
6. Stock up on Carrots
Aside from being a wholesome vegetable, carrots are packed with beta-Carotene, which later transforms into vitamin A in the body. Vitamin A is responsible for strengthening the eyes and protecting them from night blindness. While carrots can be used in many ways, you can get most of their benefits by juicing them. And for added benefits, add gooseberries to the mix, which are also a rich source of vitamin A and antioxidants.
7. Drink water from a Copper jug
Copper lends innumerable healing properties to the body. It contains antioxidants and is a vital component of the natural dark pigment, melanin, which imparts coloration to the skin, hair and eyes. Copper protects against the graying of hair and maintains the color of your eyes into old age. To reap the health benefits of copper, store one liter of water in a copper vessel overnight and drink it the next morning.
8. Eat more Kale
Kale is rich in cancer-fighting antioxidants and vitamins - a good enough reason to eat more! But, it is also a good source of beta-Carotene and contains both lutein and zeaxanthin - in fact, just one cup of kale contains 23.8mg of both compounds. Kale can be juiced, or added to fruit smoothies, it can also be used in a salad or a side dish. Kale chips are especially tasty and really easy to make. Just drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with seasoning salt, then bake them in the oven until the edges are brown (but not burnt).
9. And why not grill some Corn
Who doesn't love corn? Besides its great taste, corn is a fantastic source of lutein and zeaxanthin. According to the Journal of Agricultural Food and Chemistry, cooking corn for a longer period of time increases the amount of lutein and the antioxidant level per serving. You can add it to soups and casseroles or eat it as a side-dish, on the cob, cooked in its traditional way.
10. Broccoli works wonders too
Besides being rich in fiber, broccoli is especially high in vitamin C, which also contains-eye boosting beta-Carotene, as well as the compounds lutein and zeaxanthin. Eating broccoli will also help keep eye fatigue, soreness and blurred vision at bay, reducing stress on the eyes and thus allowing them to perform better for a longer period of time. Broccoli can be prepared in a number of ways - it can be baked, grilled, sautéed or eaten raw - no matter the method you chose, it's delicious either way.
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